Friday, June 11, 2010

Women’s Revolution Blue King Brown

Updated: Today Blue King Brown, one of my most favourite Australian bands, released a new single called Women’s Revolution. This song has been previewed this week on Australia’s Government Youth Radio station Triple J but I was not lucky enough to hear it until I purchased it myself. The release of a new album or song by an independent group such as this serves as a great example of how the internet can assist with the dissemination of information about music.

I was notified through an email that the release date was today and have patiently waited all week to be able to listen to the song. Interestingly enough there is a mention of finishing their new album on Facebook but so far no post about the release of the new single. I had also read that the song was available through MySpace this week but when I visited their page I could not see the song available for streaming (maybe I missed something). Googling the song this morning for the lyrics showed that the lyrics do not appear to be available independently from the song as yet however there were some write ups about the song. This begs the question as to whether they are really using the web in the most productive way to communicate their messages.

While it is early days yet in the promotion of the new single, this appears to be a disjointed release which could have been coordinated a little better. The other perspective, of course, is that a staggered web release may actually extend the time in which the single gains exposure. I will attempt to keep an eye on how this is managed, and if lucky enough to ever interview them (yes have sent in my ethics approval report to keep this as an option for my doctorate) I will be sure to ask what strategy they employ and what they see as being the most effective way for an independent band to use the net for getting the word out about their music.

In the former spirit and vein of a vinyl single, an iTunes purchase results in two tracks – the first listed being a remix featuring Queen Ifrica (with video clip) and the second being the song (only)with slightly different lyrics. I appreciate getting two versions of the song for the price of one and respect them for not short changing their listeners. Indeed, on their website, which contains a relatively small graphic about the single, they state: “The special price and free video download is our way of saying thank you to all the fans who have supported BKB over the years”.

The song is more like a sound track than a popular song in places with a beat and tempo more suited to listening or watching than dancing. Indeed while the song is reggae/hip hop in style, the most notable thing to me is the tempo. Depicting the way women are held back in the world through sexism, violence and systematic discrimination, the pace of this song feels like it is being held back too.

The two versions of the song have slightly different lyrics but they are otherwise very similar. The central message is one of unity against rape and the unfair treatment of women. The lyrics speak of sisters, inequality, revolution, and not being afraid. The chorus states that through women’s resistance ‘freedom finds a place to dream’.

The instrumentation and use of samples help to create a sense of dreaming with the unity of voices through both the backing singers and Natalie/Queen Ifrica illustrating the collective voices of women around the world. The structure of the song is unusual and seems to reflect the complexity of womens issues.

Blue King Brown are undoubtedly the thinking audiences’ band and it is no surprise that they would release a single with a strong feminist message. Despite not speaking directly to their male listeners they are not likely to suffer detriment because of this. Their consistency as writers/recorders of political songs is a fundamental part of who they are and for them this is not a risky song but true to their overall objectives and style.

More Information
Blue King Brown Website:


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彥霖 said...


British Council Test said...

Sally I work with Blue King Brown on their website and social media would be more than happy to pass on an email to interview the band drop us a line